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Old 26-Feb-2014, 5:37 PM   #1
HDTV-OTA
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Antenna Recommendation setup rural Fort Worth, TX

Im new to the HDTV antenna subject. For the past several weeks, I have been reading some excellent posts and information on the forums from some very dedicated, knowledgeable and helpful members. Ive been reading about the Channel Master 4228, Gray-Hoverman variations, XG-91, Super G-1483, Yagi style, Channel Master 4251 Parabolic 7ft(discontinued in 2000), CM double boom 3617B, Finco 400-A antennas(aka "bed spring), Mclapps M4 (2) 10 whisker 4 bays stacked vertically, Wade Delhi 8' dish - about $2,500, and HD Stacker, and others. I tried the Mohu Leaf Ultimate, but received zero channels in this area. I need some help with finding the best antennas for my location. Below is my TVFool search location. Given the report, Im almost located in the middle of the Fort Worth antenna farm and the Witchita Falls antenna farm. The Fort Worth antenna farm(32 channels) is between 65-70 miles away. I like the Antenna Direct DB8 (8 Bay Bowtie) setup. Im open to any suggestions. Thanks in advance for your help.
1. Would 1 DB8 be sufficient?
2. Would 1 DB8 with an amplifier be sufficient? If so, what amp?
3. Would Stacking 2 DB8s?
4. Would stacking 2 DB8s with an amp? If so, what amp? Splitters/Combiners?
5. Receive VHF-Lo and VHF-Hi channels?
http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...5b94d6c4425aa5
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Old 26-Feb-2014, 7:04 PM   #2
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First, I'd investigate the signal opportunities at higher mounting heights.

If your first TVFR link is representative of what's available at heights 10' to 20' higher, then I'd opt for the combination of an Antennas Direct DB8E or 91XG + Antennacraft Y10713 + RCA TVPRAMP1R. Aim toward 135-140 (compass).

This is a case where a tower might make more improvement than an antenna choice.
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Old 27-Feb-2014, 4:57 AM   #3
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An interesting Tvfool report.

Many Digital Broadcast Tv Stations/Channels.

All a Uniformly Very Low Signal Strength , have 2 Edge Path reception path obstructions=Hills and The Tv stations are 60 + miles away.

The tvfool report is 20 feet above ground.

To see if the signal strengths improve with higher antenna heights.

Do not delete the 20 feet Tvfool report.

And make and post 2 more Tvfool reports , 40 and 60 feet antenna heights above ground.
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Old 27-Feb-2014, 5:33 PM   #4
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@ Teleview, included the 40ft and 60ft report. Thanks for reminding me about the increased elevation. Thanks

http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...5b945d55449cb8

http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...5b9441a0d6eaa7
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Old 27-Feb-2014, 5:39 PM   #5
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@ GroundUrMast. Excellent antenna setup recommendation. It gets very windy here occasionally, was wondering if the DB8 has more wind load that a Yagi style antenna. Today, I going to try to buy a 50ft telescoping antenna mast which may extend to about 43ft.
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Old 27-Feb-2014, 7:20 PM   #6
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I've not seen any published spec on wind-loading... Given that I own a 91XG and a DB4E, my semi-educated guesstimate is that the DB8E would have much less tendency to rotate but otherwise, the two are similar in overall wind loading.
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Old 27-Feb-2014, 10:49 PM   #7
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The signal strengths do not improve much .

However because the signal strengths are So Weak and so Far Away and have 1 and 2 Edge Path obstructions.

The closer you can get to 40 feet antenna heigth above ground the reception will be improved because the higher antenna height will get the antenna above most close ground clutter.

Keeping in mind the signal strengths are very weak and transmitters are far away with path obstructions.

I recommend install antennas that are designed to receive as much signal as possible.

I recommend install 2 antennas.

A Antennas Direct , DB8e , UHF antenna.

And about 3 feet below the DB8e antenna on the same mast install a.

http://www.antennacraft.net.

Y-10-7-13 VHF antenna.

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Aim both antennas at about 138 degree magnetic compass direction.

Here is how to aim antennas , http://www.kyes.com/antenna/pointing/pointing.html.

Use a Real and Actual magnetic compass to aim antenna.

Here are some above the roof antenna mounts.

http://www.ronard.com/909911.html.
Use the , ronard(911) , 5 foot tripod antenna mount.

http://www.ronard.com/Tripods%200703/4712.html.
Use the , ronard(4712-50-10) 10 foot tripod antenna mount.

http://www.ronard.com/ychim.html.
Measure around the chimney and use a , ronard(2212) , ronard(2218) , ronard(2224) .

Buy the ronard antenna mounts at , http://www.ronard.com , or , http://www.amazon.com.

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Home Depot and Lowes have 10 foot lengths of , Top Rail , chain link fence Pipe that makes good antenna mast. The price is Low Dollars.



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Install a , http://www.antennacraft.net , 10G221 preamplifier.

Connect the DB8e UHF antenna to the UHF connection of the preamplifier.

Connect the Y10-7-13 VHF antenna to the VHF connection of the preamplifier.

Have the FM radio trap switch in the in/on position.

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For the initial hook up of antennas and Testing and Adjusting for best reception.

Have only 1 Tv connected , I recommend run a continues length of coax from the antenna/preamplifier , through a open door or window direct to 1 tv.

No splitters.

For coax that is outside , use RG-6 Coax that has the Compression type connectors on the ends of the coax , not the crimp type connectors.

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When all is setup and working well.

For 1 Tv connected use No splitter.

For 2 Tv's connected use a , Holland Electronics , HFS-2D , 2 way splitter.

For 3 Tv's connected use a , Holland Electronics , HFS-3D , 3 way splitter.

Buy the , HFS-2D and HFS-3D , splitters at , http://www.hollandelectronics.com , or , http://www.amazon.com.

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Here are some places to buy antennas and etc.

http://www.amazon.com.

http://www.antennacraft.com.

http://www.hollandelectronics.com.

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For your consideration and evaluation and money.

Here are , Free Standing , No Guywires , Light Weight , Aluminum , Lay Over Towers.

Do antenna install and adjustments standing on the ground.

http://www.palcoelectronics.com/pe300.aspx

Last edited by teleview; 28-Feb-2014 at 4:48 AM. Reason: Clarify information and typos.
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Old 19-Jan-2015, 3:56 AM   #8
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Help With Antenna Selection

RE. http://forum.tvfool.com/showthread.php?t=13236 @ Tripelo, Nice antenna towers. Excellent contributions from all the other members.

Need some more help with buying antennas. Attached is my TVFool report. Im approximately 61-70 miles from the DFW(Cedar Hills) antenna farm. Most are 2 edge signals. A few day ago I bought a new CM 4228HD. I was unable to receive any channels - Zero. I tried different locations, directions, and RG6 Coax cables. But, my 4228HD arrived with a slightly bent or misaligned reflector, someone conveniently left a big boot print on the box. Since I didn't receive any signals, I questioned if my CM4228HD is defective.
I have been researching the:
1. Winegard HD8200P
2. Antennacraft SuperG 1483 (the stacked Hooverman version)
3. XG-91
4. VU936sr
5. VU937SR
6. VIP-307
Will any of these work for my location? Any advice is welcome from any and all members.
Thanks in advance.

http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...2c154fe5313e71

Last edited by GroundUrMast; 19-Jan-2015 at 6:30 PM. Reason: moved help request to appropriate forum section - repaired TVFR link
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Old 19-Jan-2015, 6:43 PM   #9
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If the signal levels were higher, (NM values in double digits), I'd consider the HD8200P so that you could try chasing down the few L-VHF signals shown on your report. But given the low levels you face, I can't be very optimistic that the 8200 would deliver value over an antenna or combination of antennas that cover just the H-VHF and UHF bands.

If you see something broken on the CM4228, I'd try getting it replaced... If there was only minor bending that you were able to straighten, I would be looking at options that mount the antenna higher...

The DB8E has a slight edge on the other 8-bay panel antennas due to it being engineered to cover a narrower range of the UHF band... But if a serviceable CM4228 sees nothing, the few dB of added gain in the DB8E design is not likely to deliver a miracle.

That still leaves questions about the setup of your tuner and it's ability to deal with weak signal conditions. Did you configure the tuner to scan for over the air signals... Cable mode is often the default and totally incompatible with OTA formatted signals.
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Old 19-Jan-2015, 7:53 PM   #10
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Pretty much agree with GroundUrMast's above comments.

Quote:
Originally Posted by HDTV-OTA View Post
RE. http://forum.tvfool.com/showthread.php?t=13236

Need some more help with buying antennas.

1. Winegard HD8200P
2. Antennacraft SuperG 1483 (the stacked Hooverman version)
3. XG-91
4. VU936sr
5. VU937SR
6. VIP-307

Will any of these work for my location?
There is a good chance that the CM4228HD is a good antenna for your location. This assumes you are mounting the antenna outside.

Unless the feed line is broken or shorted, slight misalignment or bending a CM4228 does not cause great problems.

That you do not receive any channels may mean something is not set up properly or some equipment has failed.

The largest antennas in your list (VU936sr, VU937SR, and VIP-307) are not manufactured anymore and would be hard to find. At present, you probably would not use the low VHF capability of these antennas.

Channels 2 (KSFW) and 4 (KHFW) do not seem to be on the air.

Channel 8 WFAA in many cases can be received via a CM4228HD.

You may have some FM stations nearby that could cause a problem with Channel 8 reception. Unless you were quite close to the FM stations, it is not very likely the FMs would prevent UHF reception. Check with FMfool.

If there are very strong FM stations nearby, you may want to install an FM Trap.

Whenever you do start seeing reception of some stations, you may gain some improvement by using a preamplifier (such as the popular RCA version).

Thanks for the kind words about the antennas and contributions from other members
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Old 20-Jan-2015, 4:37 AM   #11
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Thanks for the responses. I had planned to mount the 4228 outdoors.

My new 4228 may have been a used or returned item. The box arrived in its original OEM box, box was open, missing 2 hardware wing nuts, top left side reflector was bowed and misaligned, no internal padding, styrofoam or packaging, reflector assembly partially attached to the bowtie assembly, and the overall antenna had scrapes and abrasions on it. Is that normal?

Could the balun be electrically defective? Have you seen defective baluns?
The balun physically looked sound.

@ GroundUrMast: Good point you questioned about the setup of my tuner and it's ability to deal with weak signal conditions. On the 55 LED TV, I scanned on both the Antenna and Cable mode several times. Also, connected to my HP all-in-one computers TV tuner and received zero channels. A couple months ago, I was visiting in central Louisiana and was using a Mohu Leaf ultimate on both the above mentioned TV and CPU to watch TV. Process of elimination.

@Tripelo: Good point you mentioned I may have some FM stations nearby that could cause a problem with reception. I think I do have, or appears to be, an FM station very nearby, maybe 2 to 3 miles away. TVFool indicates I have 3 stations 10 miles away. Will these FM station interfere with any of my channel reception?

Some folks in this fringe location seem to have older or typical 6 to 10 beam yagis, but rarely see any larger yagis with a 14 to 16 beam. I cant say what channels they may or may not be receiving.

Someone stated on a forum that bigger is better given certain situations.

Im wondering if stacking 2 4228s with a RCA preamp, Super G 1483, or a larger yagi such as the 8200U would receive a reasonable amount of channels that I could work with?


Thanks for your help.
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Old 20-Jan-2015, 12:08 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HDTV-OTA View Post
TVFool indicates I have 3 stations 10 miles away. Will these FM station interfere with any of my channel reception?
Yes, 91.3 KDKR does raise a concern for channel 8. A Radio Shack FM trap should adequately attenuate the signal if you are at least 5 miles away from the transmitter. You could also try a stronger FM trap, but I have personally found the Radio Shack model to work well above 90 Mhz.

Of course this is if KDKR is really the issue as the 4228 is many times OK on VHF, but unpredictable as it is basically a UHF antenna.
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Old 20-Jan-2015, 12:33 PM   #13
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There are no low-VHF signals in the DFW area so that eliminates #1, 4, 5, & 6 from the list.

All DFW stations except WFAA are UHF, so, a UHF-only antenna like #2 or #3 would be expected to miss that one.

The fact that you got nothing suggests to me, as to others, that something is either defective or something has been overlooked.

The 4228 is, like any 8 bay UHF antenna, VERY directional when dealing with the weakest signals, it must be accurately aimed for maximum effectiveness.

If you have a Menards nearby, they usually stock the RCA preamp. I'd suggest picking one up along with a fresh run of RG6. Install the pre-amp at the antenna and run the new coax directly to the TV set (and power inserter) bypassing any existing cabling and hardware. If you still get nothing, I'd then conclude the antenna's balun is defective.
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Old 20-Jan-2015, 2:37 PM   #14
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This may sound silly, but I had a no channel at all problem yesterday. Our gym at work has a TV and an indoor rabbit ear style antenna. Only picks up 4 really bad local channels.

So, I brought in my first home made DB4, which at home pulled in 29 channels and hung it in the window of the gym. Connected it to the TV, ran the scan and nothing, not a single channel.

What the heck, it got 29 at home. Pulled it apart several times, put the old rabbit ears back on got the same bad 4 channels.

Long story short, when I connected the cable to the TV, I bent the center pin over, , no connection at all = no channels at all. Never occurred to me to look at the end of the cable until I had fooled around with it for an hour.

Take your time and look at all the connections, could be something really simple.

Last edited by rickbb; 20-Jan-2015 at 2:38 PM. Reason: correct spelling
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Old 24-Jan-2015, 9:55 PM   #15
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@ Tripelo - Nice work

Re. http://forum.tvfool.com/showthread.php?t=13236&page=5 @ Tripelo - Nice work. Thanks for posting the Signal measurements from several commonly used preamplifiers. It interesting that there is very little difference for the MER measurements. But, a much larger difference UHF output signal strength. That good information many can find useful when buying amps. Given the cost difference of these amps, the RCA seems to be a good choice.

Mr Higgins added useful point that the RCA is immune to strong FM overload and saw no notable difference in reception in his array.

I'm between 61 - 70 miles from the Cedar Hills (DFW) antenna farm, and I'm trying to identify an antenna to reach.

Given you guys knowledge and experience and without giving out any trade secrets - could I ask what antenna(s) setup would you recommend for these UHF & VHF channels?


1. Winegard HD8200P
2. Channel Master 3671 Crossfire
3. XG-91
4. Antennacraft SuperG 1483 (the stacked Hooverman version)
5. Stacked CM-4228HD
6. Stacked DB8’s

Thanks in advance for your help and advice.

Last edited by GroundUrMast; 24-Jan-2015 at 10:52 PM. Reason: Moved to HWR forum
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Old 24-Jan-2015, 10:59 PM   #16
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here is his TV Fool Report:
http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...2c154fe5313e71
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Old 24-Jan-2015, 11:56 PM   #17
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The experts will answer, but this is what I would try first:

- For UHF DB-8e with reflectors removed (assuming you are wanting the channels both NW & SE).
- For VHF if you only wanted the VHF-HI I'd say the Y10713. But I don't know what to suggest if you want the VHF-LO.

Is #3 the Antennas Direct 91XG UHF TV Antenna? It's directional, so would not give you a shot at both the channels NW & SE.
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Old 25-Jan-2015, 1:33 AM   #18
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I consider the DB8E to be the current leader of all the consumer grade high performance UHF antennas. (Removal of the reflectors will significantly reduce the performance of the antenna. If you opt to try this, be careful to retain the reflectors so that they can be reinstalled with machine screws & nuts.)

The Y10713 gets that title in the H-VHF class.

Your TVFR suggests that you may see some benefit from dedicating a preamp to each antenna, combine using a UVSJ down-stream of the preamp power insertion blocks. (At best this will only net between 0.5 and 1.0 dB of net noise margin improvement over a system that combines up-stream of a single preamp.)
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Last edited by GroundUrMast; 25-Jan-2015 at 2:16 AM.
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Old 25-Jan-2015, 3:56 AM   #19
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@ Pete, thanks for posting TV Fool report. Is that a picture of your array, Xtreme Signal (HDB8X) stacked with a VHF antenna above and below? Nice. Any thoughts on stacking some 8 Bays antennas for my location?

@Jake V, Thanks for suggestion/response. Many recommend the DB-8 for pri UHF. Sure, as you mentioned, it would be great to receive channels both NW @ SE - almost directly 180 degrees opposite each other. The 91XG. stated that it will not reach channels both NW & SE? After reading many forum posts and research, I was considering this 91XG to be a very hopeful UHF antenna.

GroundUrMast, Thanks for your the response. The DB8E is a nice antenna and the reflectors serve a purpose, especially for longer directional reception. Question: How would the Y10713 compare to a very large size UHF/VHF yagi with regards to distance, channels received and overall performance?

Thanks again to any and all responses much appreciated.
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Old 25-Jan-2015, 4:07 AM   #20
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I own a 91XG... Until the DB8E arrived on the market, it was at the top of the list in UHF only performance. It's still a great antenna.

The Y10713 offers all of the performance or more than what you could get in a multi-band combo antenna (for real CH-7 through CH-13). The Y10713 will pick up less FM signal power than an all channel antenna, and can help avoid interference problems if you have a nearby FM transmitter. Separate H-VHF and UHF antennas allow you more flexibility when fine tuning aim.
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